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Moving a Visible Counter to a Hidden Location?

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dnddmdb
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Hey, everyone,

I was thinking today of a game where one aspect is to move a token/figure from a visible space to a secret space, but a way to keep track of it so it can be revealed later?

To be clearer, imagine you have a hexagonal grid, and have a "warrior" in a hex. And then you move him to another hex, but which one is unknown to your opponent (although they could infer possibilities based on how far the warrior can move). You remove the warrior from the board, but keep track of where it has moved to using...? I thought of maybe having a set of cards that correspond to each hex, and putting one under the warrior off the board to keep track of its location? But for lots of hexes that seems unwieldy. Anyone have any ideas? Preferably something that can keep track of multiple secret units at once? Maybe cards you could write on with marker and wipe clean?

Any ideas are much appreciated.

Best,
Dan

FrankM
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A couple ideas, neither especially good

That's an interesting problem. Maybe someone else has already solved it in another design, it'd be great to see that.

On my own, I can see using a mini-map behind a screen, but there's no way for another player to "audit" that a suddenly visible unit really was where the owner says it was. That's because showing the mini-map would reveal ALL hidden units.

A second solution would be to print coordinates on the main hex map - rows and columns in different colors, or one letters and one numbers - and have a bunch of chits/rings/whatever with row and column indices on them. When a unit goes out of sight, place it behind a screen and put the appropriate pair of chits on it.

You'd need a lot of chits, maybe three or four copies of each index, but it's still less than having a card for every hex on the map.

The nice thing is, when a player needs to reveal a unit, he/she can pick up the miniature and chits together without revealing any other hidden units.

RadarLockGames
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Had/Having Same Problem

Good evening Dan!
I am having the same kinda problem. Mine is a naval type game dealing with Submarines. Initially, I had the players keep track of their own sub location via a "sub-sheet" that they kept hidden from others but then they would have to "surface" after a certain time frame or was found by a destroyer looking for the subs or if they fired a weapon then the counter would show up on the main map. We started to run into a few issues with this system. first players would forget or lose their sub location or they would just pop up (cheating) where ever they wanted. I then started to number each square on the map to help with location but again with out something physically to move on the map, the counter was out of sight, out of mind. I then was offered the idea to have "ghosts" on the map of subs. the idea was to have a counter of a sub but then have several (4 in my case) "ghost" sub counters. Each one would move independent in which ever direction as they wanted but only one would be the actual submarine with weapons. It could be the brightly colored sub or one of the grey colored subs. This allowed us to visualize that there was a submarine(s) in the area or on the map, but the exact location is unknown (1 of 5 locations). This system is still in progress but it is better then not allowing submarines within the game (and take away that element) or have people continue "lose" submarines on the map. Draw-back is with the "ghost" additions, it has increased the counter numbers from 5 subs per navy times 4 navies to now 4 "ghost" subs per sub times 5 subs times 4 navies... (Crap got to make more counters).
I will keep toying around with this and keep you updated or if you hear of a better way of keeping track of secret or invisible counters, I would also love to hear about it...
Have a great evening.
Dano
Radar Lock Games

Corsaire
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A log sheet like used in

A log sheet like used in Spectre Ops could work.

Have a horizontal row of boxed with the first one for the identifier. Then each turn you write the new location in each box to the right. You could circle the locations when it ws visible.

Alternatively would be a miniaturized version of the board, then you could track with unique colored cubes or pegs (though I imagine peg boards are expensive.)

If they are only hidden for short periods or if the board is 4x type, you could have movement markers indicating the direction travelled. That could be pretty heavy on cognitive load for more than two or three moves. E.g. East, East, South.

FrankM
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I like the log idea

I like the idea of the location log, it makes it harder (though not impossible) to cheat, and a pad of log sheets has the marvelous quality of being consumable. Sell refills.

dnddmdb
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Can an approach be audited?

Thank you to everyone for the responses!

I do agree that this is a tough one. The chit-designation system is most similar to what I had in mind. It can be audited to make sure no one is cheating, but you're right that it is fiddly. There would be a lot of components to keep track of in order to designate anything.

The log sheet I think is a very straightforward way to go about this. My only issue is that it seems sort of inelegant and can't be audited, because making sure a player wrote down the appropriate destination beforehand can't be checked.

Dano: The "ghost" idea is interesting, but I think for multiple units at one time that will quickly get out of hand with the number of counters, unfortunately. But it is an interesting take!

If it helps at all, my system would never have a hidden unit move to a hidden location. It would stay put until revealed. Not sure if that gives us anymore options.

Thank you to everyone for the brainstorming ammo!

Best,
Dan

RadarLockGames
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Agreed

Good Evening Dan!
Yes the "ghost" idea adds A LOT of extra counters on the board and it is far from a perfected idea.

happy brainstorming...

dano
radarlock games

FrankM
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No hidden movement

This is an easier problem if there is no hidden movement at all. The owner can put the location chits (or even just a slip of paper) facedown under the unit and leave it in full view of the opponent. Maybe one-sided standee chits (think Stratego pieces) to help the owner remember where the unit is supposed to be (turn them face-down if there is a need for everyone to leave the table for lunch).

This allows a continuous "audit" by the opponent that the recorded position doesn't change, and gets revealed when the unit becomes visible again.

dnddmdb
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Exactly, but the amount of chits...

Frank, that's exactly the idea I'm thinking. I just worry about players having to sort through scores of a dozen unique chits to find the ones needed to designate the space. The paper works, but seems a little archaic.

UPDATE: Just found these https://www.amazon.com/Erase-Blank-Cards-Poker-Size/dp/B076PY395C which might be a decent answer. Just include some markers sort of like Wits and Wagers.

Thanks to everyone for the help. Still curious if there's a non-writing solution that uses fewer chits.

Dan

questccg
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Revealing the location

So say a Warrior is on Hex "A" ... and he goes into secrecy. The "Warrior" token/mini/stand stays on Hex "A", but movement is tracked on his "personal" card (PET 0.22mm card) UNTIL someone reaches Hex "A". When this happens, you REVEAL "where in the world" the "Warrior" is now (on Hex "B").

And you would rise & repeat the process using his "personal" card.

With regards to the hexes, each Hex would have SIX (6) "Numbers" (1-6) each time the "Warrior" moves, you simply record which "number" he has traveled to on the "personal" card. So "6"-"4"-"4"-"3", etc. On a standard "personal" card, you can record the movement.

Each "personal" card could have reveal rules, like every three (3) hexes or when a previous Hex is visited. Something like that and it can be dynamic and "custom" for each unit/character.

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